To prospective PhD students - README


I regularly get email applications for PhD supervision, PhD scholarships, PhD funding etc. from many parts of the world. If you consider sending me such an email, please first read the following questions and answers. Thank you very much.

Martin Volk

Will you have a funded PhD position this autumn / in January / next year ... ?

We do not have regular PhD positions. We only have PhD positions in connection with funded projects (Swiss National Science Foundation projects, Swiss CTI projects, EU projects, industry projects). When these positions are granted to us and we search new staff, we advertise the positions on the LINGUIST List.

I can get a scholarship from my home country and plan to complement this with a job in Zurich. Will this suffice to survive in Switzerland?

Please notice that the cost of living in Zurich is high and the possibilities for paid work on the side of PhD research are limited. If you consider this option, then find your job in Zurich before you come to Switzerland in order to avoid financial hardship.

I have finished a program in Computer Science, Artificial Intelligence, Translation, ... but lately I have found Natural Language Processing intriguing. Can I apply for a PhD in Computational Linguistics with you?

We only accept PhD students who have a strong background in Computational Linguistics or a closely related field. Programming skills and programming experiences related to text processing are an important prerequisite for all our PhD students.

I know English and my mother tongue well. Do I need to know any other language to work with you?

In almost all cases we require strong German language skills for our collaborators. We live and work in the German speaking part of Switzerland, and we therefore regard German skills as an important asset. Good English skills are also indispensable. If you want to increase your chances to work with us, take an intensive German class, because most applications with us fail because of a lack of German.

I am interested in working on subject X and Y and have some experience from school Z. Can you supervise my research in these areas?

If you want us to take your question seriously, please read our web pages carefully. There we state our research interests. Please argue how your research idea fits into our research framework. If your subject areas are far away from ours, and you do not explain the connection, we will discard your email immediately.